In Wednesday’s Philadelphia Daily News, columnist Bill Conlin brought up a great point about the designated hitter. I realize this is probably a moot point, since it’s unlikely this will be voted on anytime soon. However, the case could be made for the NL to adopt this rule.
It’s time the NL and AL were on the same page, given that they are in the same league overall. Seems rather ridiculous that we have gone on for 35 years with two separate rules, the only major sport in our country that does so.
The baseball purist in me dislikes it, yet it still makes sense to take the bat out of the pitchers hands, and it’s head scratching that the National League owners don’t agree. Why put an extra burden on a multi-million dollar pitcher if you don’t have to? Cliff Lee is an outstanding hitter, and probably loves getting up there to swing the stick on occasion. But in a sport where contracts are growing, pitch counts are examined with a fine-toothed comb, and the slightest injury means a week on the shelf, the DH would be a preventative issue for teams trying to protect their product. Hell, J.A. Happ was injured during batting practice. He wasn’t the same after that.
Imagine this: With the DH in the NL, the Phillies would be able to supply a lineup that would blow away AL teams. Insert Jim Thome, Jason Kubel, or Hideki Matsui into this order, and your nearly on your way to 1,000 runs.
Again, this is probably as likely as me becoming president, but it works on so many levels. Who wants to start up the petition?